Bigotry, xenophobia, sexism: Teacher asks 'shocking' political test question

Mother claims St. Augustine teacher crossed the line

By Erik Sandoval - Reporter

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. - The mother of a St. Augustine High School student said she's concerned about the political wording of a question on a vocabulary exam her son took Monday.

Reanna Parham and her son Logan said the question was part of an advanced English exam, and Logan said many in the class were talking about the way it was worded.

Question seven read: "Right when it appeared the nation was becoming increasingly tolerant of alternative lifestyles, immigration, and minorities, the vocal and angry right wing forced the nation to make a complete ________, embracing bigotry, xenophobia, and sexism."

"The words that they used seemed to be very degrading words," said Logan, a founding member of the school's Republican club.

He said he used his cellphone to send a snapshot of the test to his mother.

"I had to read it twice," said his mother. "I was really surprised. Shocked."

Parham said she posted the picture of the test on Facebook to see if other people were reading the question the same way she and her son were.

She said many of her friends also saw a problem, and now, the post is being shared.

"It leads people to believe that anyone who leans toward the right -- they're a sexist or racist or a bigot," she said. "That happens a lot of times. We hear those kinds of things. We are not, and this doesn’t help."

News 6 asked St. Johns Public Schools about the exam question.

"The school's administration was not aware of the content of the test specifically, and have addressed this internally," said spokeswoman Christina Langston.

"How many other parents have had their children come across this type of question in school, and they don't know about it?" Parham asked.

The district would not go into specifics on how the issue was being dealt with internally.

Langston did encourage parents to call the school directly if they have a problem with something. She said many times, such issues can be resolved quickly.

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